Jamaica – Veteran dancehall-reggae artiste Sister Charmaine passed away peacefully in her sleep Tuesday in Jamaica. She was 54.
“She lay down to have a nap, and never woke up. I know she had the asthma, and she had it so bad that she couldn’t leave the house without her pump, but she wasn’t sick otherwise,” her close friend and confidante Lady Ann told Loop News.
Sister Charmaine, whose real name is Charmaine McKenzie, is survived by her daughter, Kadisha and one grand-daughter.
Lady Ann said her favourite memory of Charmaine was her peculiar culinary preferences.
“She loved to eat Irish potato and sardine, she would come ah mi yard and cook, so I always had to have sardines over there and as she come, she would head to the kitchen, she love her Irish potato and sardine,” Lady Ann shared.
Lady Ann said that Sister Charmaine was a performer nonpareil on the dancehall circuit in the 1980s.
“She ah the maddest ting onstage, nothing no bad like her. No one can talk bout dem have big song and perform after , that no mean nothing, she come in like a man onstage, ah the maddest ting. She came to my birthday bash in 2019 and steal the show from me,” Lady Ann said.
Sister Charmaine is perhaps best known for her performances at the infamous Sting stage show in Jamaica. In 1988 she appeared in a clash with Lady Mackerel, and Junie Ranks. In 1989 she clashed once more with Sister Charmaine, as well as Patra and Lady P.
She was also best known for the single, ‘Granny Advice’, with the memorable lines: ‘she ah hold a kuffin, she ah go get her coffin/if she talk too hard, she ah feel mi baton, yu mussi tink say Charmaine, yu tink she frighten/if yu stick with me, yu ah go ah Madden”.
“We had planned to return to Jamaica together, but we nah go nowhere again. She fi low me now, and don’t come to my house for no more sardine, but seriously mi ah go miss her, she was my best friend,” Lady Ann said, jokingly.
She declared her a “dancehall and reggae giant”.
“All who ah hype now, dem never bad like her. Dem team up and get rid of her her. Dem fraida her, dem all say dem not doing no show with her, ah nuff fight and obeah inna the business, but she was the greatest,” she said.